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UN experts urge Bahrain to quash death sentence against two men

GENEVA (12 February 2020) – UN human rights experts* have called on Bahrain to prevent the execution of two men who were allegedly subjected to torture.

Mr. Mohamed Ramadan and Mr. Husain Moosa Ali Moosa Hasan Mohamed, two Bahraini citizens, were arrested in February 2014 for the killing of a police officer in a bomb attack. They were allegedly subjected to torture and forced to make a confession. In December 2014 they were convicted and sentenced to death. Their conviction was upheld by the Court of Appeal in March 2015 and confirmed in November 2015 by the Court of Cassation.

In March 2018, the Special Investigation Unit (SIU) of the Office of the Public Prosecution and the Ministry of Justice requested that the cases be returned to the Court of Cassation for re-examination in light of the availability of new evidence, including in relation to the allegations of torture. In October 2018, the Court of Cassation quashed the death sentences and referred the cases back to the Court of Appeal. However, the Court of Appeal again sentenced the two men to death in January 2020.

“We are gravely concerned about the allegations that Mr. Mohamed Ramadan and Mr. Husain Moosa Ali Moosa Hasan Mohamed have suffered torture and other ill-treatment to force them to confess,” the experts said.

“Admission of evidence obtained under torture into any proceeding violates the rights to due process and fair trial and is prohibited without exception. If carried out in these circumstances, the death penalty would constitute an arbitrary killing.

“We remind the Government of Bahrain of its obligations to prevent, investigate and punish all acts of torture and ill-treatment and to provide remedies and rehabilitation for victims of such acts.

“We urge all the authorities concerned to immediately halt any plan to execute the two men, to annul the death sentences against them definitively, and to ensure that they are retried in accordance with international law and standards.

“We have raised multiple cases with the Bahraini authorities,” the experts noted. “We call on the Government to establish an official moratorium on all executions with a view to abolish the death penalty.”

The experts had previously sought clarification from the Government on these cases.

ENDS

*The UN experts: Ms. Agnes Callamard, Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions; Ms. Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism and Mr. Nils MelzerSpecial Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

The Special Rapporteurs are part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms that address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. Special Procedures experts work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.

UN Human Rights, Country Page - Bahrain

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